Party On, Cantonese Style
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When it comes to Chinese cuisine, there’s so much more than just dim sum and chow mein. Dishes vary according to the regions in China, with subtle differences in flavors that indicate the cooking styles that hail from the diversity of the country itself. At Canton Seafood on Keeaumoku Street, you note what is distinctly Cantonese — from the mild spices used in the dishes to how the food is prepared with less oil and salt — as compared to other regions such as Shichuan or Shanghai.
Manager He Gong says the restaurant is currently gearing up for a busy season of celebrations. “There’s Mother’s Day coming up and also graduations for high school and college,” says Gong. “During this time, our party platters on the menu become very popular.”
The platters start from the basic $198 menu, which includes nine courses and can feed 10 to 12 people. The menu offers delicious Fresh Maine Lobster ($14.99 a la carte), which is served with your choice of ginger and green onion, pepper and salt, black bean sauce or butter and garlic.
Roast Peking Duck ($19.99 for half, $39.98 for whole) serves up a whole of half duck surrounded by Chinese-style buns and served with duck skin and hoisin sauce. Black Mushrooms with Vegetables ($11.99 a la carte) highlights mushrooms and baby bok choy, although the vegetables can also be switched out to the customer’s preference.
The party platter menus range from $198 to $398 — the higher-priced platters feature more seafood or beef dishes. Gong says the portions are generous, making the platters affordable for the amount of food you get. “We have the best deals around town,” he says. “The menu is great for all occasions: birthdays, graduation parties and Mother’s Day. We also have a great, comfortable ambience for guests to get together … plus, free parking.”
In addition to the affordable menu, Canton Seafood prides itself in making food from scratch, using special, original recipes that keep the dishes authentic a la Cantonese style. In keeping to traditional dishes and staying loyal to its Cantonese origins, the restaurant has managed to find a happy medium. “Both locals from here and customers from China love our menu,” says Gong, adding that he and the restaurant staff are often told that the food tastes just as good as the restaurants in China.
923 Keeaumoku St., Honolulu
Open Daily, 10 A.M.–10 P.M.